Considering speech therapy for stuttering in the Twin Cities? Then you know how hard it is to get quality, professional help from a knowledgeable SLP. Especially in Minnesota, where so few speech-language pathologists specialize in fluency disorders. In 2021, speech-language pathologist Gregory Scott opened the Minneapolis location of AIS, bringing New York City's renowned stuttering clinic to the Midwest for the first time.
At the American Institute for Stuttering, our clinicians are true experts, holding not just Master's degrees and CCCs from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) but also boasting years of clinical experience working exclusively with people who stutter. In short, AIS is a national leader in stuttering. Its clinicians are well versed in the latest research and frequently collaborate with the world's top experts.
Stuttering isn't just our practice. It's our passion. It's the only thing we do.
What Makes the American Institute for Stuttering Different?
At the American Institute for Stuttering, we don’t chase fluency. We master communication.
We recognize stuttering for what it is: something you’re born with, a largely genetic condition characterized by structural and functional differences in the brain. As such, we don’t attempt to “cure” it. Instead, we aim to reduce its impact.
Address the environmental, behavioral, and psychological factors that strain the speech-timing system
Reduce avoidance of speaking situations, deflating fear and easing the body's tense fight-or-flight response
Dial down physical tension and struggle
Boost confidence and overall communication skills.
If you’ve been in speech therapy before, you’ve likely tried “fluency shaping”—purely physical techniques aimed at smoothing out speech. Research tells us that these techniques are nearly impossible to perfect, often sound unnatural, and fall apart in real-life speaking scenarios.
At AIS, we offer a whole-person approach: mouth, mind, and soul. We draw on up-to-the-minute research from the field of speech pathology, as well as incorporating ideas from cognitive psychology, vocal performance, disability theory, Buddhism, mindfulness—even yoga.
What’s more, we know this works. Clients at AIS stay connected with the Institute for years, attending alumni events, speaker series, and workshops—even after they finish their course of therapy. This lifelong connection allows us to witness the real and long-lasting progress that our clients make as their lives evolve and change. It also allows our current clients to access a global network of stuttering peers.
How Speech Therapy Can Change Lives
If you or a loved one have experienced stuttering, you know how it can negatively impact daily life, personal relationships, career aspirations, and more. At AIS, people who stutter of all ages are learning to:
Develop and maintain healthy attitudes about their ability to speak up and engage in social and academic settings
Speak freely and confidently
Self-advocate assertively and unapologetically
Pursue desired educational/career paths and engage in meaningful relationships
Be their authentic selves
Take a look at our broad scope of services below.
Comprehensive Minneapolis-Saint Paul Speech Therapy Services for Kids, Teens & Adults
Comprehensive Speech Fluency Evaluations
We offer comprehensive evaluations, using age-appropriate protocols. Assessments include the following:
Physical characteristics of stuttering
The impact stuttering is making on daily life, thoughts, and emotions
Speech and language skills, including articulation, comprehension, and overall verbal expression
For kids, parent, caregiver, and teacher perceptions of the problem
Pediatric (Kids & Parents)
We offer pediatric therapy services for stuttering in person and online for children of all ages as well as support for parents. We help:
Parents learn ways to best support their child's fluency, confidence, and communication growth
Children speak with confidence and without fear
The entire family understand often confusing aspects of stuttering and develop the language to talk about it openly and supportively
For teens and adults, the fear of stuttering is often the worst part of living with the problem. Stuttering often leads to a long list of avoidances, including opting out of speaking opportunities, changing words, and using physical tricks to get words out. We know stuttering is a lot more than what people hear, and our therapy will help with:
Speaking without physical struggle or tension
Reducing avoidance behaviors of all types
Helping you become more open, and less emotionally reactive to stuttering
When you are an AIS client you have access to a wealth of educational and enjoyable workshops and activities. Thanks to our generous supporters, many of our events are sponsored, and free to the AIS community. Offerings include:
Public speaking workshops
Speaker series, featuring professional researchers, prominent people who stutter, authors, etc
Social events, holiday parties, movie screenings, etc
Workshops in areas including stress reduction, meditation and mindfulness, improvisation, small talk, and more
Our one-week immersion programs are available multiple times per year. These programs allow you to make significant progress in a short time frame. Maximizing the benefits of individual and group therapy, you get both personalized attention and the benefits of working alongside other people who stutter. The AIS immersion program includes:
Extensive practice using speech modification strategies
Completing real-world challenges such as public speaking, making phone calls, and ordering at restaurants
Taking mindfulness, cognitive restructuring, and avoidance reduction strategies from theory to practice
Developing meaningful relationships with other people who stutter
We offer one-on-one and group consultations for professionals who are seeking advanced clinical training or help with a specific case. Graduate students are also invited to apply for an internship during our one-week immersion programs. Our training will help you learn to:
Go beyond what you learned in graduate school and better understand the limitations of fluency shaping and stuttering modification techniques
Understand the lived experience of stuttering
Carry out comprehensive evaluations to understand the full impact of stuttering on a person's life
Prioritize communication over fluency in order to make a lasting impact
Upcoming programs are listed on our events calendar and our internship application is available here.
Work With Our Certified Speech Therapists in Minneapolis-Saint Paul
No two stutters are alike. No two people who stutter, either.
Stuttering—more so than other issues in speech-language pathology, like apraxia, articulation, language therapy, or autism spectrum disorder—demands an individualized approach. At AIS, we create unique therapy plans for unique clients, and we allow these plans to evolve and change as our clients do. The result is a stutter management strategy that is dynamic and flexible, taking into consideration age, temperament, life goals, and personal speaking challenges.
This personalization extends to the treatment setting, as well. Our unique office space, in the Uptown neighborhood of Minneapolis, is housed in a former stained-glass window warehouse. It is meticulously designed to instill comfort and a degree of luxury to those seeking treatment, as well as to provide close access to the cafes and shops of Lyndale Avenue and Lake Street.
We've provided stuttering therapy to individuals throughout Minnesota, including near Minneapolis, St. Paul, Bloomington, Richfield, Brooklyn Park, Plymouth, Maple Grove, Woodbury, Eagan, Edina, Minnetonka, Maplewood, and Eden Prairie. In addition, virtual sessions allow our clinicians to work with people from the Greater Minnesota area, including St. Cloud, Mankato, Brainerd, and beyond.
Financial Assistance Options
The world of health care and insurance doesn't always accommodate stuttering therapy. (Or even consider it a medical condition.) But we've got your back.
AIS is a recognized 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing top-notch therapy for people who stutter and to make those services accessible, regardless of financial constraints. When people first come to AIS, they often describe feeling confused and alone. They soon discover a true community where they feel understood and supported - a place where they can free their voice.
We want to help you speak freely and build the confidence you have been longing for. You are not alone in this journey. We are here to help you and your loved ones on the road ahead. Contact us here, or reach out directly to our Minneapolis office at (612) 245-4240 or firstname.lastname@example.org to set up your first appointment today!